Hiking Trail Overview
Trail Length: 1.5 miles one way
Elevation Gain: 1,092 feet
Pets: No pets are allowed on the cave trail or in the cave unless it is a service animal
Directions To The Visitor Center: The visitor center and trailhead are in American Fork Canyon, accessed east of I-15 on State Route 92. From I-15, take Exit 284 (Alpine-Highland), turn east towards the mountains on state Route 92, and proceed 10 miles to the monument. By summer, when conditions permit, S.R. 92, the Alpine Loop, re-opens and passes Sundance Mountain Resort before completing the circle around Mount Timpanogos and connecting with U.S. 189 in Provo Canyon.
GPS Coordinates: 40.440556, -111.709444
Timpanogos Cave Trail Hiking and Cave Information
In order to reach the caves, hikers must first undertake a 1.5-mile walk along a paved trail. This path gains 1,092 vertical feet up to 6,730 feet and it can be scorchingly hot in the summer. Bring plenty of water and don't be surprised if you feel the effects of the higher altitude by huffing and puffing along the way. Many people come just to take in the views and get a good workout without taking the cave tour.
One cool thing of note: Near the entrance to the cave, you can run your hand over tiny fossilized shells and coral embedded in the smooth Deseret limestone cliff. It’s hard to imagine that at 6,730 feet above sea level, you’re standing on an ancient shoreline.
Once you head into the cave, you’ll walk through dark passages that link well-lit chambers filled with jagged rock pillars and pylons, many encrusted with the yellow and white runoff of damp particles left behind by dripping trickles of water. The largest rooms are decorated with fangs of niter-encrusted rocks and knobby, gnarly walls. Bats and other critters call the cave home, though many will be peacefully resting during visiting hours. Tour guides are there to answer your questions and explain the geological history of the ancient passageways.